Farron welcomes government fallen stock funding for farmers
Cumbrian MP Tim Farron has this morning thanked the Government for responding to his persistent calls over the past fortnight to support farmers in light of the recent devastating weather conditions by agreeing to provide financial compensation to farmers to help dispose of fallen stock.
Earlier this month Tim wrote to the Environment Secretary, Owen Paterson, following an announcement by the Scottish Government that they would be offering funding to farmers to help cope with the impact of the weather, to call for a similar offer to be made to English farmers, particularly those in the Northwest, who have been worst affected by the snow.
In a Written Statement tabled this morning, Liberal Democrat Farming Minister, David Heath, announced a £250,000 fund to support farmers who have lost sheep as a result of the unseasonable snow fall and cold temperatures with the disposal of fallen stock.
Recent weather conditions, which have seen unseasonably cold temperatures and high levels of snow fall, have caused huge destruction to farms and livestock across the north and North West of England. Snow drifts as deep as 25ft have in some cases buried whole flocks of sheep, brought down buildings and blocked roads.
The NFU has been running a Fodder Bank to help struggling farmers to access feed for their livestock.
Commenting Tim said: "The weather across the North and North West England has been completely devastating for many farmers as hundreds of sheep have been lost after being buried under snow and what should be an enjoyable lambing season is now threatened with complete destruction.
"The income losses that will come as a result of the weather is incredibly damaging, but the increased cost of having to pay to dispose of fallen stock has the potential to put many farmers out of business altogether. I am very grateful that the Government have listened to my pleas and set up a fund to help keep our farmers afloat in this incredibly difficult period. I will continue to monitor the situation very carefully to ensure that farmers are receiving all the support they need."